FTA Ireland (FTAI) welcomes the second 10-year Strategy for the Haulage Sector consultation as published earlier this week (9 November 2022) by Department of Transport. However, to make the strategy a success, FTAI, which represents the country’s logistics industry, urges government to collaborate with the sector on the delivery of its recommendations.The strategy sets out the direction for the haulage and heavy goods road freight sector for the next ten years, with the latest consultation following responses from the first public consultation which launched in April 2021. Aidan Flynn, CEO of FTA Ireland, comments: “FTAI supports many of the proposals made within the strategy. Having recommended that the freight distribution and logistics sector to be represented at emergency planning task forces in its initial consultation response, FTAI welcomes the government’s recommendation to create a Road Freight Forum that will support structured cross-stakeholder engagement.
“FTA Ireland is keen to support the prioritisation of issues focused on within the strategy and, as one of the proposed seven key themes, is calling on government to provide a clear roadmap to decarbonisation, as well as establish clear guidelines for commercial fleet operators to transition to alternative fuels. This must be done in tandem with the availability of affordable fuels, the introduction of nationwide infrastructure to support alternative refuelling and a commitment to protect the viability of operators reliant on fossil fuels over the coming years. Also, any new regulations must not compromise competitiveness as availability and cost of rolling stock aligns to support the industry’s transition to net-zero.”
FTA Ireland is now urging government to focus on a consistent and collaborative approach with industry and their representatives, to ensure a sustained focus on the key topics included in the strategy and help the sector make a smooth transition to a net-zero future. In the view of the business group, the strategy must include a workable plan that can be accountable through realistic recommendations that are delivered within promised timelines.